|The word Klyros written in Klyros ideograms|
The Klyros language (known as Klyran when speaking about it in Common, or as Kgel (language) when speaking about it in klyran) is very simple and logical in its structure and grammar, yet powerfully flexible and adaptive like the Klyros race itself when a need for new expressions arises.
It is based on an ideographic writing system, that originates in the artistic traits of its creators, and deals mostly with concrete concepts. Most of the few abstracts that are present in the language are also used with a special grammatical function. For example to express gender or tense.
There's only one sound in Klyros pronunciation that is not available in the Common alphabet. This sound - the shwa - like a short form of the vowel in the Common word "her", is transcribed by an apostrophe when writing Klyros in the Common writing. This sound vanishes completely when it lies adjacent to another one that is not identical to the preceding. K' combined with lyr becomes thus klyr
|The word Kgel written in Klyros ideograms|
The Klyran has three different variants - Ancient one, Old one and Modern one. This article refers mainly to the Modern Klyran yet some differences with older variants are mentioned.
- 1 Transcription and Pronunciation
- 2 Word classes
- 2.1 Ksinos (process words)
- 2.2 Konos (substantial words)
- 2.3 Kzanos (descriptive words)
- 2.4 Kefaos (logic words)
- 2.5 Ktenos (replacement words)
- 2.6 Knetos (relation words)
- 2.7 Knubixos (silent words)
- 3 Descriptor precedence
- 4 Honoring and dishonoring prefixes and suffixes
- 5 Numbers
- 6 Typography
- 7 Common Letters
- 8 Grammar
- 9 Names
- 10 History
- 11 See also
Transcription and Pronunciation
Klyran is an ideographic language, but for the purpose of transliteration and an attempted merge with Common (which was unsuccessful, thereby obsolete) [Editor's note: this is what should be used when speaking Klyran IG], there is an alphabet using the Common symbols for letters. All letters are used for the same sounds they describe in the Common language, with a few exceptions and peculiarities:
- c is pronounced like the ch in chase
- g is pronounced like the second g in garage
- q is pronounced like the ch in Scottish loch
- x is pronounced like the sh in shine
- z is a lisping sound that is made by first pushing the tongue lightly against the back of the incisors while pronouncing an s and then gliding the tongue to the front between the teeth, linguistically a voiced inter-dental affricate
- ' is and extra vowel. It is pronounced like the e in her
- Vowel length is always constant. Long vowels are transcribed as double vowels:
- aa is pronounced a as in (British) can't
- ee is pronounced ee as in (French) idee
- ii is pronounced ee as in peel
- oo is pronounced eau as in (French) chateau
- uu is pronounced oo as in boot
Ksinos (process words)
The base of the Klyros language are Ksinos, the process words that roughly correspond to the verbs in Common. Each ideogram refers to a process word. All other words are derived from Ksinos using pre-, suf-, or circumfixes.
Please refer to the section on Grammar for details.
Konos (substantial words)
Substantial words named Konos refer to physical things, or seldom, abstract concepts. They are almost identical to the nouns of Common. The formation of nouns happens through the prefix "K'", which standing alone means to form, that is added to a Ksin and usually a suffix to clarify the meaning.
Konos are a subjective part of Klyran. Due to them being just a Ksinos with k in the beginning, they can have a wide variety of meanings and uses. To classify the meaning of ksinos, a series of sub-class suffixes is used in konos formation.
It is the suffix that makes konos derived from one ksin different. To understand better the suffix sense, you should understand that in Klyran perception every ksin has several aspects, sides or "components" of the process. And every has specific suffix. Most common are:
- the one, who does the process ("-sin"), equivalent to Common "-er"
- the object or person, the process is done upon ("-san"), equivalent to Common "-ee"
- the starting point (temporal) of the process ("-ris")
- the time when the process takes place ("-qe")
- the ending point (temporal) of the process ("-rad")
- the starting point (spacial location) of the process ("-wef")
- the place where the process takes place ("-qo")
- the ending point (spacial location) of the process ("-wer")
- the result of the process ("-bav")
- the tool that is used in the process ("-pac")
- the reason of the process ("-qi")
- the assistant in the process ("-po")
- the raw material, consumed in then process ("-fas")
- the doing of the process (gerund - "-ra")
- the process itself (no suffix)
So to have kon that defines the target of the process just add "k-" prefix and "-san" suffix to the root. For example: "gul" is "to hate"; "kgul" is "hating"; "kgulsin" is "the one who hates"; "kgulsan" is "the hated one"; "kjo" is "joining"; "kjobav" is "unity (created by the process of kjo)"
Of course, not each ksin has all possible konos. For example "kgulpac" is nonsense - no tool is used in hating.
However, there are cases when the sense of kon without sub-class suffix differs from "the process", or "proper" suffix is not used. It is mostly a matter of being understood, so it is best to put them into context almost all the time.
As most notable example: "Klyros" is not "processes of living", but "people".
Konos as Ktenos
Konos, known grammatically for the k prefix, sometimes become burdensome to repeat. For this reason, Konos can grammatically become Ktenos by removing the k prefix. This is done usually when it is obvious that the word is an object/person/place/idea, rather than an action. For example, in the statement ze wo ksiblim (I greet Brother), the k in ksiblim can be removed making the phrase ze wo siblim. This practice is avoided in official documents, but is very common everywhere else.
Kzanos (descriptive words)
Kzanos literally translates to the Common word colours. It describes a word class of attributes and descriptive expressions that can be seen as a mixture between Common adjectives and adverbs. There are two main types of Kzanos: Descriptive ones, with "zan-" prefix and Possessive ones with "xu-" prefix.
Possessive kzanos don't always deal with possession or owning, they actually specify an object as being somehow relative to another. They are made of konos by replasing "k-" prefix with "xu-". The result is kzan that indicates connection of kon/ksin it
is used for with original kon.
For example "mef" is "to teach", "maad" is "to learn". "kmaadsin" is "student", "kmefsin" is "teacher", "xumefsin" is "teacher's". So if we have "xumefsin kmaadsin" then it is "teacher's student" or "student of teacher".
One more interesting thing is one can make kon out of such kzan by adding "k-"
prefix again. The result will be something like "the one, which relates to
Better to get it by example. Once again, "kmefsin" is "teacher", "xumefsin" is "teacher's", but "kxumefsin" is "teacher's one".
Descriptive kzanos are made with "zan-" prefix. Just like in case of konos there
can be following suffix for subclass specification.
- "-sen" is roughly equal to "-ing" ending in Common, expressing that something is in process or on-going. For example "lim" is "to fly", "kle" is "leader" so "zanlimsen kle" is the "flying leader" while "kle limsen" means "the leader is flying".
- "-san" is roughly equaly to "ed" ending in Common. For example "nyar" is to kill, "zannyarsan klesin" is "killed leader"
- "-iim" means capable of doing the core ksin. For example "lim" is to fly, "zanlimiimsin klyr" is "klyros, that is able to fly"
- "-iimsan" means capable of undergoing the core ksin, comparable to the Common suffix "-able". For example "der" is to heal, "zanderiimsan klyr" is "klyros, that can be healed"
- "-sot" is roughly equal to "-ful" in Common, expressing the notions of 'plenty' or 'rich in'.
Kefaos (logic words)
The logic words or Kefaos (lit. thoughts) are used to make logical connections between Klyros phrases. They can be compared to linking words, conjunctions of the Common. Most of them are formed using the ksin jo- (to join) as a word class prefix.
For the purpose of understanding Kefaos, there are two categories of words based on their common counterparts. It should be noted, however, that these are unofficial categories made only to help those who are learning Klyran as a second or third language.
These Kefaos roughly correspond to conjunctions in common. They include and (jojo), if (je), or (joja), not and (ne), etc. While they mean the same as conjuctions, they don't have to link things together. Because this is confusing to Common speakers, that practice has dwindled.
These Kefaos are used for logical purposes. They include yes, no, true, false, sometimes true, etc. While they aren't considered conjunctions in common, they can be used as conjunctions in Klyran.
Like conjunctions is Common, Kefaos are usually placed between the Konos to show they are connected. Unlike conjunctions, they may not be used to combine complete sentences together, and combining phrases is limited, but not unheard of. When used in listing, like conjunctions again, they may be placed between the last two things being listed instead of between everything.
When Kefaos are not being used as conjunctions, they can be placed as needed in sentences. They are often interrupt sentences in order to put emphasis on truthfulness, falsehood, or whatever the situation demands.
Ktenos (replacement words)
Ktenos are the equivalent of Common pronouns though their usage is more difficult and subject to cultural peculiarities. It is highly advisable to pay attention to the correct use of ktenos when communicating in Klyros. Wrongly used they can easily be a cause for offense.
|ze (I) and zeos (we)|
The most unproblematic of the ktenos is the one referring to oneself alone. The first person singular is ze (archaic also 'kze').
The first person plural is zeos.
Note that the use of the honorific wo together with the first person is considered uppish, except for a ruler. (It would be appropriate where Common makes use of the "pluralis maiestatis", "we, the octarch")
|zelim, and zemil|
It is polite for a Klyros to give the own gender when addressing a non-Klyros. (It is not alway easy for foreigners to discern the Klyros sexes from their appearance). In these cases 'I' translates to zelim for a male and zemil for a female.
There is also asexual gender descriptor "-kya", which makes "zekya" form possible to use for Kran.
|woyi (respectful you)|
In contrast it is most important not to use a gender descriptor when addressing someone directly. That is done with yi only. The use of yilim or yimil between persons who are not familiar is more or less disrespectful depending on whether the grammatical gender matches the sex of the addressee.
In an intimate relation yilim and yimil place an non-ambiguous emphasis on the addressee's sex, while in combination with the honorific prefix wo- it is considered a term of endearment.
The use of woyilim or woyimil outside of an intimate relationship equals a proposal.
The standard form of addressing people unknown to oneself or in an especially respectful manner is woyi.
The honorific can be used as a suffix to honour high-ranking individuals when addressing them: woyiwo corresponds to your highness.
|yalim (he), yamil (she), and yaos (them)|
Talking about an individual it is obligatory to make use of a gender descriptor. Everything else would be considered very disrespectful. Thus Common he translates to yalim and she to yamil, kra to yakya. When talking about someone who is present it is considered polite to make use of the honorific, but not obligatory, if you are familiar with the subject. For inanimate objects kya is used which means it.
Talking about a group of people who are known to belong to one sex only, you usually use the gender descriptor aswell (yalimos, yamilos). But do not so, if the sexes of all the subjects are not exactly known. For mixed groups only use yaos. The use of the honorific is arbitrary in the plural, depending on the situation.
- my & mine: xuze & kxuze
- your & yours: xuyi & kxuyi
- his & his: xuyalim & kxuyalim
- her & hers: xuyamil & kxuyamil
- kra's & kra's: xuyakya & kxuyakya
- its & its: xukya & kxukya
- one's & one's: xusios & kxusios
- our & ours: xuzeos & kxuzeos
- your & yours (pl): xuyios & kxuyios
- their & theirs: xuyaos & kxuyaos
- here & there: rafnet & farnet
- this & that: kyaraf & kyafar
- these & those: kyarafos & kyafaros
Knetos (relation words)
What Common refers to as a preposition is called Knetos in Klyros. These words are formed using the prefix net and used to describe mainly but not exclusively temporal and spatial relations.
Generally knetos are formed by adding specific suffix to "net" prefix so technically knetos have no root. To understand what suffixes are suitable you should first understand aspects of ksinos. According to logic of Klyran every ksin has several aspects of it with corresponding suffix. And that suffixes are those can be used in knetos formation as well. See konos formation).
Example: So "netwef" is "from" (space location), "netpo" is "with help of" (somebody), "netpac" is "using" (some tool).
There are also several knetos that are formed not by konos suffixes, for example "netxu" is "of".
Knubixos (silent words)
Knubixos are ideograms that have no spoken counterpart. They are optional, usually placed at the end of the word. They signify special conditions of words (such as whether they are a name). Their use is uncommon, but not unheard of, in modern written Klyran.
Since Klyros is a highly agglutinative language, it is important to know what the correct precedence of the descriptors in word is:
- possible honoring or dishonoring prefix and after that, maybe, optional prefix-connecting ideogram
- word class descriptor
- the root of the word
- person descriptor
- gender descriptor
- numeral descriptor
- temporal descriptor
- voice descriptor
- mood descriptor
- other suffixes
- possible honoring or dishonoring suffix and before that, maybe, optional suffix-connecting ideogram
In compound words there can be of course descriptors to each of the composed ksinos. Other prefixes/suffixes have equal precedence, so they may be placed in any order.
Honoring and dishonoring prefixes and suffixes
One interesting aspect of Klyran is one can add optional honoring or dishonoring prefixes and suffixes to Kon or Kten. This is used to show personal attitude of speaker or social position of the one spoken about. Prefixes indicate personal attitude of speaker. Suffixes indicate social status of the one spoken about. It is recommended to use special prefix connection ideograms after (dis)honoring prefixes and before (dis)honoring suffixes These ideograms are Knubixos and have no sounds of their own. Instead while being spelled they are interpreted as a pause a little bit longer than between ordinary syllables. In transliteration it is written as "-".
Commonly used honoring prefix is "wo-". Omitting this prefix is accepted only while speaking about friend or relative, otherwise that could be considered to be offense.
The concept of the Klyros numbering system might strike foreigners somewhat odd as the cardinal numbers are regarded a process and accordingly are expressed through Ksin. The digits are pronounced as vowels of different pitch and length. In Ancient Klyran there were not 10 digits but 8 because Klyros have only 4 fingers per limb.
The base of the Klyros numbering is a decimal system almost identical to the Common one. The difference is that the symbol for zero is not used to form number values higher than nine. Instead there is a special symbol meaning "ten" that is not used separately. It appears where you would expect a zero in a number of Common. The digits are formed by the following ideograms:
Thus the word uiioaae is the pronunciation of the number 37564. If the numbers pronounced as the same vowels are adjacent there is a short shwa or pause inserted to discern them from one another. So uiioaa'a means 37561.
The number zero is written as nu which means to negate (or as substantial form knu i.e. nothing)
Ordinal numbers belong into the word class of Kzanos.
For example while ai means twelve zanai refers to the twelfth of a row.
Fractions are written using ya a ksin meaning to divide, that is often shortened to y' when used for this purpose. Depending on their usage the fraction can be a ksin or a kzan.
|zanayaai, the twelfth part|
Fractions with a low denominator are commonly used to form other word classes as well. The half for example is kayi in Klyros while zanayi would mean half in the sense of a Common adjective.
Numbers can be turned negative by adding nu to the beginning. When the number is pronounced, however, the u in nu is dropped, so -37564 is pronounced nuiioaae.
There is no punctuation in Klyros. In ancient and old versions of Klyran sentences are simply separated by a full space, meaning a blank that is equal the size of a ideogram. Words within sentence are mostly separated by a half-space, half the width of an ideogram. Sometimes, especially often found in ancient poetry, there is no word spacing, to the effect of making the poem more aesthetic to the onlooker but also a lot harder to read and interpret.
In modern Klyran people use full space to separate words in sentence and double full space to separate sentences. The reason for that is nowadays there is no deficit of paper and ink and using space of size of ideogram places all ideograms exactly into grid. Klyros ideograms always have constant square form.
Klyran books usually have ideogram grid 16x26 on each page. The same grid is often used in scrolls. Such ration is close to Golden one.
|Common alphabet as Klyran ideograms|
Klyran has limited use of Common words, mainly names. For that a special class of ideograms exists - Common letters. However, these ideograms have no upper or lower case. It should be noted that everybody who knows Klyran nowadays, actually natively speaks Common, so the pronounciation of Common words is no different than in Common in contrast to different reading of Klyran transliteration (see Transcription and Pronunciation).
For simple presense sentence structure is SVO - subject, verb, object.
Any kzan in sentence refers to the word following and according to that is interprited to be adjective or adverb. For example "woya a zanxyaa kzisin" - "he/she/kra is strong blacksmith", but "ksukpac zancu zisan" - "axe is well made".
For ksin (verb) plurality, persons, and gender are all optional to add.
Klyran doesn't have continuous or perfect aspects at all. Continuous aspect is just removed. Perfect aspect is roughly equal to moving to past tense.
So for Klyran there are 3 tenses: past (suffix "-far" is used), present (no temporal indication suffix) and future ("-ga" suffix).
Auxiliary Ksinos are all based off of the klyran word "a" which refers to one or equals. By itself "a" works for most singular auxiliary verbs in first, second, and third persons. When using it to describe the state of plural words, you add the suffix "os" to make it "aos" which again works in first, second and third persons. When speaking in past or future tense, you add "far" and "ga" respectively. Gender descriptors may be added, but they are unnecessary.
For Passive Voice formation "-san" suffix is used. Auxiliary verb is not used in Passive Voice phrases unlike "to be" in Common.
Example: "ze" - "I", "der" - "heal", "-san" - Passive Voice suffix, in total: "ze dersan" - "I am healed", "ze dersanfar" - "I was healed"
In Klyran there are four main moods: indicative, conjunctive, imperative and infinitive (some don't consider the last as a mood). To indicate the mood of ksin several suffixes exist.
For conjunctive mood "-je" is the only suffix. It cannot be omitted. See "Conditional sentence".
For indicative mood there is "-ce" suffix that is usually omitted. When it isn't omitted it corresponds to addition "to do" that show assurance in Common like "I do want to help".
For imperative mood there are number of suffixes that correspond to different sort of request from begging to ordering with threat of killing in case of refusal. These suffixes can be omitted. If the sentence has no subject then it is in imperative mood.
For infinitive mood there is "-lee" suffix that cannot be omitted.
Conditional sentence in Klyran has the following structure:
je [condition] joje [consequence]
The verb in consequence always has suffix "-je". Unlike Common, the verb in condition must be in the same tense as the verb in consequence.
Example: "je" - "if", "ze" - "I", "po" - "help", "woyi" - "you", "joje" - "then", "rad" - "finish", "klakpac" - "sword"
"je ze poga woyi joje woyi radgaje klaksin" - "if I help you, (then) you will finish sword".
Question structure in Klyran is different from Common as word order change doesn't happen. Object in the sentence is replaced by special word with "kee-" grammatical prefix. Such words are equivalent to Common "who", "what", "when", etc.
Example: "woyi" - "you", "a" - "are", "qa" - "who". So "woyi a keeqa" - "You are who", "Who are you?"
In auxiliary questions word change also doesn't happen. Only "kee-" prefix is added to the verb. Example: "Will he go?" - "Yalim keefarga"
Prefix "kee-" can be added to subject instead of verb if it is questioned what subject is going to do the action. Example: "Will he go?" - "Keeyalim farga"
Prefix "kee-" can be added to several words. If it is so, then the question asks to define several aspects. Example: "Will he go? And if he does, where?" - "Yalim keefarga keeqo"
Some Klyros names are made up of multiple words, or distortions of words, put together to have a hidden meaning. For example, Haiim literally means "to wait, to have opportunity," but if you look at those words together, then you can see hidden meanings like "he who waits for opportunities," which could be taken to mean many other things. Other names don't have meanings, and just sound nice.
However, with centuries many Klyros communities abandoned Klyran, so many modern Klyros names even do not have spelling in Klyran
[Editor's note: If you are a Klyros and would like for your name to mean something, then click on the below link and add words to mean things. Remember, though, that Klyran words are usually only one, sometimes two, syllables long. If certain syllables are already taken, don't change them, just use them to your advantage. If you can't think of anything that uses those syllables, remember hidden meanings.]
Not much is known about history of Klyran and Klyros race itself before their arrival to Yliakum. However many leading linguists while analyzing the structure of Klyran came to conclusion that it has few almost discrete layers of evolution. The first identified layer, Ancient Klyran, is artificial language and it was implemented not long time before Klyros arrival to Yliakum.
It is speculated that the first layer was developed for being used in written form only by upper class of Klyros society. But during the following centuries it replaced also the oral form of Klyran, existed those times.
Ancient Klyran differs in many ways from the modern variant. For example, the typical sentence structure was SOV - subject, object, verb rather then SVO - subject, verb, object.
The second recognized layer, known as Old Klyran, emerged in the early 4th century when the Klyros found common ground with other races. It contains many simplifications concerning grammar. This layer has few variations of itself and there are no doubts it was codified at some date. Yet no written sources left mention such event.
All modern historians agree that like other languages, Old Klyran lost its positions after formation of the Octarchy and the degree of 451 AY. Since that time Common language was spreading rapidly and in just few decades made Klyran a dead language. The process is believed to have been completed in 530-540 AY. At least the last known book written in Klyran was written in 511 AY and a book that describes Klyros villages of 540s in first and second levels claims even elder Klyros didn't use Klyran.
And the last, third layer of Klyran emerged only few decades ago when number of enthusiasts began their efforts in restoring the language. As there were no native speakers left to the moment, the last layer, Modern Klyran, is definitely the closest one to the Common, especially in terms of grammar.
Number of factors enfueled the process of relearning the language by Klyros. Lack of farming lands for more and more growning population, rogue raids on roads resulting into problems with supply lines, natural disasters like the Ojavedan Plague - all these problems that the Octarchy failed to solve effectively. The Octarchy started to lose the trust and multicultural integration process not only stopped but even went in reverse direction. More and more people started looking answers for thier lives in ancient racial cultures including languages.